Seasoned campaigner R Ashwin on Monday smashed his fifth international Test ton on Day 3 of the ongoing second Test between India and England in Chennai. The 34-year-old smashed 14 fours and one six on his way to a gritty 106.
Notably, He had bagged a fifer during England’s first innings. Coming to bat at 106/6, Ashwin batted beautifully on Monday to keep the English bowling line-up at bay. He was involved in a 96-run partnership with skipper Virat Kohli, which helped India build a big second-innings lead.
R Ashwin took the England spinners to the cleaners but was equally adept against the pacers — Stuart Broad and Olly Stone. Despite Kohli, Kuldeep Yadav and Ishant Sharma falling at the other end, Ashwin decided to up the ante with tail-ender Mohammed Siraj at the other hand.
Ashwin, however, completed his century with a mis-hit as an outside edge took the ball past slips for four. He was the last player to get out as India were bowled out for 286 on Day 3. England now need a massive 482 runs to win the Test and take a 2-0 lead in the series.
For the records, this is the third instance of Ashwin getting a 100 and a five-wicket haul in the same match. Only England’s Ian Botham has achieved the same feat more times (5) than him. Gary Sobers, Mushtaq Mohammad, Jacques Kallis and Shakib-Al-Hasan are ranked third in the list, having achieved the feat twice.
Moreover, Ashwin is the first player since Sir Gary Sobers in 1966 to score a hundred and take a five-wicket haul in the same Test match against England. He is also the second player from Tamil Nadu to score a 100 at the “Chepauk” after Kris Srikkanth, who had scored 123 against Pakistan in 1986-87 season.